Childhood eczema is on the rise, says a new Pediatrics study. But most kids aren't prescribed what could give them relief: steroid creams. Doctors and parents fear the medication's side effects -- used too much, they could suppress growth and cause skin to thin. But when they're used correctly, side effects are largely a nonissue, says Sandy Tsao, M.D., associate program director for procedural dermatology at Harvard.
If your child has eczema and non-medication treatments (such as applying moisturizer regularly and using a gentle soap) haven't helped, ask your doctor about a low-dose steroid cream.